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Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse

The Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse crime in the state of Texas gives police the right to arrest you if they believe you use a credit card or debit card in any of a variety of fraudulent ways. Learn more detailed information about the Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse offense below.

Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse is classified in the Texas Penal Code under Title 7 “Offenses Against Property,” Chapter 32 “Fraud.”

What is the law in Texas about Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse?

The offense is described in Section 32.31 of the Texas Penal Code.

(b) A person commits an offense if:

(1) with intent to obtain a benefit fraudulently, he presents or uses a credit card or debit card with knowledge that:

(A) the card, whether or not expired, has not been issued to him and is not used with the effective consent of the cardholder; or

(B) the card has expired or has been revoked or cancelled;

(2) with intent to obtain a benefit, he uses a fictitious credit card or debit card or the pretended number or description of a fictitious card;

(3) he receives a benefit that he knows has been obtained in violation of this section;

(4) he steals a credit card or debit card or, with knowledge that it has been stolen, receives a credit card or debit card with intent to use it, to sell it, or to transfer it to a person other than the issuer or the cardholder;

(5) he buys a credit card or debit card from a person who he knows is not the issuer;

(6) not being the issuer, he sells a credit card or debit card;

(7) he uses or induces the cardholder to use the cardholder’s credit card or debit card to obtain property or service for the actor’s benefit for which the cardholder is financially unable to pay;

(8) not being the cardholder, and without the effective consent of the cardholder, he possesses a credit card or debit card with intent to use it;

(9) he possesses two or more incomplete credit cards or debit cards that have not been issued to him with intent to complete them without the effective consent of the issuer. For purposes of this subdivision, a card is incomplete if part of the matter that an issuer requires to appear on the card before it can be used, other than the signature of the cardholder, has not yet been stamped, embossed, imprinted, or written on it;

(10) being authorized by an issuer to furnish goods or services on presentation of a credit card or debit card, he, with intent to defraud the issuer or the cardholder, furnishes goods or services on presentation of a credit card or debit card obtained or retained in violation of this section or a credit card or debit card that is forged, expired, or revoked; or

(11) being authorized by an issuer to furnish goods or services on presentation of a credit card or debit card, he, with intent to defraud the issuer or a cardholder, fails to furnish goods or services that he represents in writing to the issuer that he has furnished.

How can I be charged with Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse?

You can be charged with Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse if the state’s attorneys believe that you violated any subsection (b)(1)-(11), as described in the section above, have been met.

What is the punishment for Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse?

A conviction for Credit Card or Debit Card Abuse is punished as a state jail felony, but it can be enhanced to a third degree felony if the state prosecuting attorneys can prove that it was committed against an elderly individual.1


Legal References:

1Texas Penal Code Section 32.31(d)

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